A Breath of Fresh Air

Living Room New Paint

I did it.

I painted my living room.

New Paint Color!Shortly after I wrote this post, I realized that the following weekend was a 3-day weekend because of Martin Luther King Day.

Living Room DetailsI jumped at the opportunity and set to work. The color winner was not one of my original choices, but I really do love it. It’s Valspar’s La Fonda Mirage.

Reading NookAnd so, prepare yourselves, here’s the photo dump.

Candy BarThe Front Poarch - Living Room

My first Ikea Hack has a new home next to the candy bar
Ikea Hack- Clock Candy Bar CornerNew Living Room Paint! Media Console Living Room RevealAnd the best part? Now I have the blank canvas next to the entry way. . .

Blank Wall

What would you do with it?

Dreaming of a Kitchen Reno

Last week I told you that I’ve dreamed up an entire kitchen renovation, which stemmed from a leaky faucet on our kitchen sink. And dreaming is exactly what I’ve been up to. . .

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Ever since I started thinking about going white I’ve been itching to get the paint out and over haul the whole thing.

I’ve been reading tutorials on how to paint your kitchen,

How to paint your kitchen cabinets in 10 easy steps

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 and how to make your own countertops from concrete and recycled glass.

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As well as building custom drawer organizers, under the sink storage and vertical storage for baking sheets.

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You know, as well as new light fixtures, hardware and a backsplash. No biggie.

To say that we hope to accomplish this task soon would be a lie, in fact our greatest hope is to complete it in 2014 so I think slow and steady will win this race. We have plans to break the re-haul down into manageable chunks, the first of which is a trial run on the smallest piece of countertop between the stove and the door to the garage.

Here we go!

If you have a leaky faucet, you’re going to replace the kitchen sink. . .

We are back from my brother’s wedding weekend and I am just getting over a cold that had me out for a good part of this week. It’s always amazing to me how much a little cold can really take it out of you! The wedding was beautiful, classy and all around elegant affair and we couldn’t be more excited to welcome Elizabeth into our family.

When Phillip and I moved into this house, almost 2 years ago (where did the time go???) we knew that we were getting a house with a lot of character. If you own an old home, you know that sometimes ‘character’ really just means nothing ever works the way it’s supposed to.

Old Kitchen Sink

Let me introduce you to the kitchen sink. At first glance it looks pretty functional but if you take a closer look you’ll see that in fact the faucet leaks. Every time you use it. Annoying.

Leaky Faucet

So, like logical homeowners, we replaced a few seals and like most things in an old home, the problem still persisted. Typical. Around this same time, I noticed a beautiful white porcelain sink on Craig’s List that was in great shape and very reasonably priced.

‘If we’re going to replace the faucet, we might as well replace the sink while we’re at it.’ (I’m not a big fan of stainless.) FAMOUS. LAST. WORDS. You already know where this is going, don’t you??

New Kitchen Sink

So we bought the sink, brought it home and I immediately thought, ‘I can’t put my beautiful new sink on these ugly laminate countertops.’

Blue laminate countertops‘And if I’m going to trade out the countertops, I am for sure going to paint the kitchen cabinets while they’re off.’

Mismatched cabinet pulls‘If I’m already painting the cabinets, I want to go ahead and replace all this ugly, mis-matched hardware.’

Old Kitchen Hardware‘And if we do all that, we’ll have to put in a backsplash and get rid of this awkward, extra-tall countertop extension.’

High backsplash . . . and if you give a mouse a cookie, he’s going to want something to drink.

Sorry for the word vomit but, I’ve been dreaming and making plans and I’ll be back next week with more details!

 

I will paint my living room . . . one day . . . I promise . . .

Let’s talk a walk down memory lane shall we??

This was our living room right after we moved in, almost 2 years ago. Tan, tan and plaid = BORING.

2012 House Tour Living RoomWe’ve made LOTS of improvements since then like purchasing a new couch. . .twice, as well as painting the walls a neutral blue color and adding an entertainment center. When last you saw it, the room looked more like this.

House Tour New Couch

. . .and it still looks that way today. I’ve been dreaming of going white but still haven’t quite been able to pull the trigger. So instead, I’ve been buying random paint samples and creating my art on my wall.

Paint Sample OptionsNow here comes the really honest and pathetic part; most of these samples (you know, all 7 of them) have been up. . . SINCE AUGUST.

There it is, I said it.

Hi, my name is Leah and I can’t commit to a paint color.

So, I’ve decided to take a step back and revisit my original inspiration. Behold the peacock feather.

Peacock Color PaletteBeautiful right?

Here’s how I see it in my space.

Living Room Inspiration Board

So not to make any promises or anything but I think it is safe to say that at some point, in 2014, I will paint my living room. . . I hope. . . .

Ikea Hack: SMYCKE Wall Clock

SMYCKE Clock Transformation

Welcome to the first Ikea hack on The Front Poarch! What’s an Ikea hack you ask?? Great question! An Ikea hack is when you take something pretty basic (from Ikea, duh) and make in infinitely more awesome! (There’s even a website dedicated to it.)

I started with this SMYCKE Wall Clock, which I’d been eyeing for sometime.

Ikea SMYCKE Clock HackThis particular clock is pretty cool to begin with because it’s made up of small, hexagon plastic tiles that can be configured to any shape.

Ikea SMYCKE ClockIt comes with a set of connectors that allow you to freely join different pieces together.Hexagon tiles fit togetherFor this hack I wanted to change up the color scheme of the tiles so I selected a few from the original set. I chose to keep the white, green and a few of the gray tiles as-is.

Original hexagon tilesSince I already had lots of regular spray paint in my stash, I purchased this Valspar primer for plastic and it worked like a dream.

Use primer for plasticEach tile then got a coat of a different shade of green, blue or purple. Once they were dry, I sat down on a sunny afternoon and set to work.

Painted clock, ready to assembleI began by laying out the tiles and playing with the arrangement. . .

Hexagon tiles around Clock. . .however, I soon attracted some unsolicited help.

PicMonkey CollageOnce I had a layout more or less complete, I started piecing the back together and pretty soon . . .

Add connectors to the back. . . the clock was complete.

Clock on wall SMYCKE Clock

Ikea Hack- SMYCKE Clock

 

Rack-Card Kiosk

Are you ready for our first transformation of 2014??  That plain-jane rack-card kiosk in my dining room finally has a new look!

Transformed rack-card holder

Technically I finished this project late last year but what difference does it really make? Am I right?? Last year a friend gave me this display kiosk that she’d picked up at a store closing sale. I had lots of great ideas about how to use it but none of them ever really seemed to win my heart.

It was always one of those, ‘Well, I could put pictures in it. . . or maybe I’ll save cards that we receive. . . or MAYBE invitations to events. I love invitations and they’re always so pretty!’ Round and round I would go, never really making up my mind.Boring rack-card displayOne day, as I walked in the door from work, I checked the mail saw this card we’d received from the water project and popped it in the kiosk. It was in that moment that I knew.

Display personal cardsThe next free evening we had I went to Lowe’s and scoured the spray paint aisle. My initial moment of inspiration said ‘go for the gold’ but standing there looking at gold I knew it was all wrong. I pulled and audible and went black. Man oh man, I’m sure glad I did!

A little paint goes a long wayUpdated rack-card displayDisplay Christmas cards and family photosSo needless to say, I’m kind of using it to display a conglomeration of our lives. . .pictures, invites, cards, etc. (you know, like every single idea I’d previously had) but somehow against that beautiful black back-drop it’s all more wonderful that I could have imagined.Rack-Card Display from thefrontpoarch.comWhat are you working on for 2014?

The 2014 Line-up: Storage that works

If I could give my house one goal for 2014 it would be storage that works. I’m excellent at purging a space and organizing everything for a pretty reveal but keeping it that way is another story all together.Under the kitchen sink

I always feel like there is ample room to grow and adjust in any given space but then one day I look up and realize that I was completely wrong and all my efforts have turned into a stash worthy of hoarder status. 
Fabric Storage

Can I get an amen??

Master ClosetSo here it is, the proverbial new year’s list of goals/incentives/points of stress/accomplishments or whatever you want to call it.  Either way, I’m writing it down which for me means that I will actually work towards accomplishing it.

  • usable storage for my kitchen, including but not limited to cabinets and drawers
  • this will likely be a part of a larger kitchen reno, but more on that later

Junk Drawers Cabinet Storage

 

  • usable storage in the craft/sewing room

Craft Closet Bottom of craft closet

  • portable storage for the hall closet
  • usable storage for my shoes and occasional items like sweaters, shorts, etc.

Master Closet

  • last but not least, paint the freaking living room. I almost pulled the trigger on this project before the holidays but I realized I had just enough time to either paint or put up the Christmas decorations. I chose decorations. More on that later as well.

So what are your goals for 2014?

Happy New Year’s my friends!

 

Let it Snow

Happy Friday everyone! We had a great Christmas celebrating with both Phillip’s family and my family. How was your Christmas?

With just days to spare, I finally managed to get one new Christmas project done. Similar to last year, I created another faux mantel of sorts by hanging sticks above my entryway bar, this time spelling out Let it Snow!Let it SnowFor all the details on creating and hanging my last faux mantle, visit the post here.

I started with sticks from my yard again and then cut them to size and scoped out my letters.

Use sticks to make wordsUsing my hot glue gun, I glued each letter (and snowflake) together.

Glue sticks together

 

These twigs also got a good coating of glue but this time I used equal parts of glue and water to make it easier to apply. Once the glue was brushed on, each letter got a generous sprinkling of Epsom salt and was then left to dry.

Cover sticks in Epsom salt

 

The letters were hung with fishing line and attached to the ceiling with clear thumb tacks.Hang with clear thumb tacksI also glued a few of the letters together to keep them facing forward.

Make snow lettersA few birds were added and the faux mantle was done for this year!

Snow art

 

Bu-bu bu-bu Bubblin!

Are you guys ready for Christmas?? I think it’s safe to say that I am not. . . I still have presents to make, in addition to wrapping. . . forget about decor because I still haven’t started on the cleaning that needs to be done before guests arrive!

I did manage to get 1 quick project in last weekend though. I’ve been working on our guest bathroom for some time and have been dreaming of ways to hang ‘bubbles’ above the shower.

Under the SeaI’ve been eyeing clear, plastic Christmas ornaments for about a year now but I never ran across any that were reasonably priced. A few weeks ago I just happened to be in Walmart and they had some for just $.88! They even come in 2 sizes!

Start with clear Christmas ornamentsTo make your own ‘bubbles’ here’s what you’ll need:

  • clear, plastic Christmas ornaments
  • fishing line
  • clear thumb tacks
  • scissors

Bubble Supplies

Start by taking off the ‘top’ of each ornament. . .
Remove the top of the ornament. . .and remove the ‘cap’ so that you just have the hanger left..

Ornamets to Bubbles

Now you’re ornament, looks more like a bubble!
Remove the capUsing a long piece of fishing line, loop the line through each of the hangers.

Bubble ClusterOooooohhhh pretty.

Using your clear thumb tacks, hang each bubble above your shower at varying heights.Hang the bubbles*Hint* Putting your step ladder actually in your shower makes this task a lot easier!

Step stool in the shower

Hang a few ornaments and it’ll start to take shape!
Bubbles in progressIn order to vary the heights, you might have some extra fishing line. No problem, just trim it off when you’re done.

Trim extra fishing line

I hung 7 ornaments total but I think I’ll look for a few more small ones to balance it out.
Hanging BubblesI know this is risky to say, but my Under the Sea bathroom might actually be finished!

Under the Sea

 

Party Stash: Santa Beard Tutorial

As I mentioned earlier this week, I made a few Santa beards for mom’s annual Christmas card and today I’m back with the quick and easy tutorial!Santa Beards!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • beards shapes cut from cardstock (more on that in a minute)
  • popsicle sticks
  • cotton balls – about 200 for 8 beards
  • school glue
  • hot glue

DIY Santa Beards

I started by purchasing a beard shape from the Silhouette store and cutting 8 beards with my Cameo. They we’re approximately 6″x6″.Make beards in Silhouette studio

To assemble the beards, put a generous amount of glue on one side of each cut-out. . .
Use lots of glue. . .and start stacking cotton balls. I found the best finished beard was produced when I started with 5 cotton balls across the mustache. Then outlined the edge of the beard and then the mouth.Glue cotton ballsFinish by filling in the center for a full, fluffy beard!

Full fluffy beardOnce the glue is dry, use your hot glue gun to attach a popsicle stick to the back.

Attach a popsicle stickMy sticks were a little weak so I decided to use 2 per beard.

Glue beards on a stick

I loved the finished product and they looked great in our Christmas card photos!Phillip & Leah Poarch
Make your own santa beards - thefrontpoarch.com